Russian President Vladimir Putin believes his U.S. counterpart, President Barack Obama, would save him if he were drowning.
Putin received the strange question during an annual televised call-in with the nation on Thursday. To laughter, he responded that though he doesn’t have much of a personal relationship with Obama, he believes Obama would save him.
“I don’t want to be drowning!” Putin said, according to a translation by Russia Today. “… I don’t think I have a close personal relationship with Obama. I think Obama is courageous and a good person, and for sure he would save me.”
The personal relationship between Putin and Obama has deteriorated over Obama’s second term in office. Conflicting positions various issues — from the Syrian civil war, to the asylum of former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, to the current situation in Ukraine — have strained relations between the U.S. and Russia.
Putin fielded a wide range of questions from Russians during the call-in on Thursday. He answered many on the Ukrainian crisis, but he also was asked his favourite film (“Chapayev“) and when Russia would have a new First Lady. (He said he must first help his ex-wife find a new husband.)
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